Major Auto Manufacturer Case Study
In an effort to modernize the user experience and increase the site performance, a major automobile manufacturer engaged MethodFactory to design their next generation enterprise eCommerce platform. Based on years of experience in optimizing Microsoft Commerce Server, Ascentium, Commerce Server .NET, and Sitecore Commerce (SCpbCS) solutions, the company selected MethodFactory to assist with this important strategic initiative.
This confidential client is a global provider of transportation technology and products. The North American automotive division designs, manufactures, and delivers parts, accessories, and vehicles through thousands of dealers and partners throughout the United States and Canada.
As a result of increased demands by their automotive dealers and their customers, the client sought to improve the legacy B2B2C parts and accessories eCommerce system to better reflect their stature as a world-class technology organization, and respond to their clients’ needs for a modern, high-performing, self-service eCommerce solution. The client had and legacy solution in place that had been implemented as a means to deliver parts and accessories for millions of component categorized by Year, Make, and model, going back dozens of years. Because the system was in continual use, and employed sophisticated integration between several manufacturing systems with complex supply chain orchestration, it was important that all aspects of the next-generation system were carefully designed.
MethodFactory started by defining the scenarios that the to-be system would satisfy. Because the technical aptitude of the visitor scenarios varied greatly (end consumers, do-it-yourselfers, installers, and authorized dealers), it was important to understand the best buyer experience for each audience. On that basis, MethodFactory designed buyers journeys that were driven by Year/Make/Model filtering, faceted search, and quick-order, that were all integrated into the same site.
Many of the incumbent systems were already stipulated, so MethodFactory’s assignment was to modernize the front-end experience based upon the implementation of modern mid-tier architecture and technology to bridge the gap between the presentation and data. MethodFactory worked closely with the client’s business stakeholders, development team, and data architects to understand the desired outcomes, and the available tools/resources that could be brought to bear to achieve a successful solution. Because of the dramatic shift in architectural approach, the massive volume of data that would processed, and the importance of delivering a solution that performed in manner that would deliver an enhanced user experience to the shoppers, it was determined that a proof-of-concept should be conducted. Based on carefully constructed scenarios representing a wide diversity of shopping scenarios – from common to complex, MethodFactory and the client worked closely together to execute tests against sample data sets and present those results into a mock wireframe UI, to prove the design was sound and would be viable upon implementation into the production environment and put under heavy load.
The result was the delivery of a thoroughly tested detailed design, written to communicate the user-level functional specifications for the business stakeholders, and a technical specification defining system-level details for the data architects and developers.
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